How to Become a Paralegal
(Find Out More and/or Enrol for this Accredited Course)
Do you enjoy the subject of law? Are you intrigued by televised court proceedings and programs? Maybe you enjoy conducting research, compiling your findings and reporting those findings to others for discussion. If this sounds like you, perhaps a paralegal position would be the right career choice for you.
A paralegal is an individual trained specifically to assist lawyers in the delivery of legal services to various clients. By obtaining a formal education, you will gain valuable knowledge and expertise pertaining to the legal system and both procedural and substantive law enabling you to work directly with an attorney. Although paralegals cannot give legal advice directly to those seeking assistance, they can conduct the necessary research and relay pertinent information to a lawyer who will then advise the clients.
A paralegal is a staff position serving as an employee who is not self-employed and does not own his or her own business. A career as a paralegal will give you the choice of working in an in-house legal department at a large company, in a private practice law firm, or in a government office. Paralegals also have varied specialisations to choose from some of which include, risk management, corporate legal, private law, family law, personal injury, bankruptcy, estate planning, civil rights consumer law and environmental law to name a few.
Programs are available at local colleges and universities as well as online to best suit your budget, lifestyle, and the amount of time you have available to devote to course study. The most common types of programs offered in the paralegal field include certificate programs, diploma's, advanced diploma's, an associate's degrees, a bachelor's degree, and a master's degree. For on campus programs, consult your local community college or university for a list of available courses and curriculum however, if you need more flexibility and freedom in your studies, an excellent online resource offering paralegal in home study can be found online.
Paralegal education programs will provide a thorough knowledge of the legal industry and will prepare you for a multitude of duties, some of which include, but are not limited to, drafting legal documents, correspondence, motions and pleadings, client interviews, and conduct investigations. As a paralegal, you may conduct legal research, statistical and documentary research, draft separation agreements, mortgages, contracts, interview witnesses, and so much more. Paralegals often attend the execution of wills, depositions, real estate closings, as well as numerous hearings and trials with an lawyer. In some instances, paralegals author and sign various correspondence provided the correspondence does not contain independent opinions or legal advice on part of the paralegal.
Now is the time to start a rewarding career within the legal industry in an awarding fast-paced paralegal position. There is an ever-growing need for paralegals as lawyers delegate more and more of their duties to accommodate an increase in clients, trial schedules, and to eliminate the need for hiring additional lawyers or taking on a partner for their office to help with overwhelming workloads.